One of the four Black Power gang members involved in the murder of Good Samaritan Christopher Crean will be paroled.

The New Zealand Parole Board said in a statement it had approved parole for Denis Richard Luke, who will be released in early July.

A written decision would be available in the next two to three weeks, once Luke and his registered victims had received a copy, a spokesperson said.

Luke became eligible for parole in 2010.


Crean, a father of four and devout Christian, was set to give evidence as a Crown witness in a police case against Black Power members who had attacked a rival gang member outside Crean's home.

The 27-year-old refused to be silenced despite threats and two unsuccessful attempts on his life, prior to being gunned down at his New Plymouth home in 1996 while his children were home.

He was posthumously awarded the New Zealand Bravery Decoration three years later.

Crean's life and death was chronicled in the TVNZ docu-drama Resolve last year.

Brownie Mane, Robert Shane Maru, Symon George Manihera and Denis Luke were convicted of Crean's murder and sentenced to life in prison in 1997.

Mane, who ordered the gang hit, was paroled in 2015 and in February this year a lengthy and candid social media post he wrote, describing Crean as an innocent man and offering apologies to Crean's family, went viral on Facebook.

"Because even though its nearly been 22 years since this crime happened I can only imagine that their pain and hurt is still very raw and that it must only feel like yesterday for them that this devastating event took place [sic]," he wrote.

Co-offender Symon Manihera was paroled in 2016, and Robert Maru will be before the board in November.


Crean's family has previously campaigned to keep his killers in prison.

His mother Liz Crean previously told the Herald, "Why should they come home when Chris can't?"